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Recipes from Celebrated Elizabeth City Chefs

Posted on 04/08/2020 by Breanna Brower

Some of our local chefs share their recipes for favorite dishes,
desserts and drinks for you to make in your own home.

You may not be able to go sit down at your favorite restaurant right now due to the statewide Stay at Home order, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy delicious food. Many restaurants are offering take-out and delivery options to satisfy cuisine craving, but if you'd rather not leave the house you can bring the flavors of these Elizabeth City restaurants right to your own kitchen.

Try these mouth-watering recipes from the chefs at your favorite Elizabeth City restaurants.Try these mouth-watering recipes from the chefs at your favorite Elizabeth City restaurants.

1. The Mills: Artichokes Al Ajillo

Recipe by Mike Mills

A tapa is an appetizer in Spanish cuisine. Tapas may be cold or hot. In some bars and restaurants in Spain and across the globe, tapas have evolved into a more sophisticated cuisine. They may range from a simple bowl of olives or a wedge of cheese with bread to a recipe of shrimp and garlic. At The Mills Downtown Bistro the classic artichokes al ajillo is one of Chef Mike Mills' most requested tapas.


1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 bulb garlic, peeled and minced
10 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
2 Tbsp dry white wine
16 oz artichoke hearts
Salt and Pepper to taste
1/2 tsp Paprika


In a skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic, and cook for 2 minutes. (Lower heat if it's browning too fast being careful not to burn). Add tomatoes and cook, stirring for 2 minutes. Add wine and reduce for 2 minutes. Add artichoke hearts and cook for 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

If you want to try more of Chef Mike's delicious dishes, The Mills Downtown Bistro is currently opened for takeout Wednesday – Saturday 12 p.m. - 7 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. for brunch.


2. Ghost Harbor Brewing Company: "Gypsy Tears" Pale Ale

Recipe by Thomas Reese

SMaSH at it's finest. Golden Promise malt and Mosaic hops blend together beautifully in this hop forward pale ale. Mango, citrus, and blueberry hop character balanced with a sweet, robust malt profile.


OG 14.5P FG 3.5P 40 IBU 
100% Golden Promise Malt 
10 IBU Mosaic hops @ 60 minutes
10 IBU Mosaic hops @ 20 minutes
10 IBU Mosaic hops @ 10 minutes
10 IBU Mosaic hops @ 0 minutes


Ferment with neutral ale yeast per manufacturer's recommended pitch rate and temperature. Dry hop @ 1/2lb per barrel of Mosaic hops (approximately 1.25oz for 5 gallon batch) 3 days before packaging.

Don't want to wait for fermentation and carbonation? Swing by Ghost Harbor to grab some cans or refill a growler with your favorite brew from Tuesday - Saturday!


3. Paradiso Roma Ristorante: Pizza Dough

Recipe by Tiffany LeClair


2.5 cups warm water
5 cups flour
1 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp salt
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp active dry yeast


In 2.5 cups of warm water, add: salt, sugar, and yeast. Whisk until evenly mixed. Add oil and whisk until evenly mixed and add to mixer add flour and mix for 8-10 minutes. Lightly flour and knead, then separate if desired.

If pizza doesn't tickle your fancy, Paradiso Roma Ristorante is still open for takeout orders! 


4. La Tiendita Mexican Restaurant: Mexican Flan

Recipe by Mrs. Tina

A sweet vanilla custard topped with a glaze of carmelized sugar.


3 eggs
1 cup white sugar
14 oz sweetened condensed milk
12 oz evaporated milk
1 Tbsp vanilla extract


Preheat Oven to 350 degrees. In a Medium Saucepan on medium-low heat, melt sugar until liquified and golden in color. Continue to stir sugar until transforms into syrup and remove off heat once golden. Carefully Pour hot syrup into a round glass baking dish - bottom of dish should be evenly coated. Set aside to cool. 

In a large bowl, beat eggs then add condensed milk, evaporated milk and vanilla extract and continue to mix until evenly mixed. Pour Eggs into baking dish with syrup mix and cover with aluminum foil. Bake in oven for 60 minutes.

Remove from oven and let cool completely at room temperature. Once completely cooled, carefully invert on large serving plate allowing Flan to transfer from glass dish to serving plate. Serve and enjoy!!!

If you're in the area, La Tiendita is still open and offering takeout and free delivery within 10 miles so if you haven't tried their food yet, now is the perfect time to do it.


5. Montero's Restaurant: Shrimp Bisque

Recipe by Andy Montero

This was a house soup for our first eight years and is always a popular option when it makes its return as a soup du jour! Recipe yields approximately 8 servings.


1/2 cup Oil
3/4 cup Flour
3/4 cup Carrots, rough chopped
3/4 cup Yellow onions, rough chopped
1/2 cup Celery, rough chopped
1/3 cup Garlic cloves, whole
4 Tbsp  Paprika
2 tsp Thyme, dried
3 tsp Black Pepper
1 ¼ cups  Sherry Wine
1 qt. Water
2 1/2 qt. Half and Half
1 ¼  each Shrimp or Seafood Base (bouillon cubes)
3 cups Shrimp (peeled and deveined) cooked & chopped 


In a large pot, sauté the carrots, onions, celery, garlic, paprika, pepper and thyme in the oil until the vegetables are tender.  Add the flour and stir to coat.  Continue to cook for approx. 5 minutes. Deglaze the pot with the sherry and reduce by ½.

Add the water and the shrimp base and bring to a simmer.  After simmering for approx. 10 minutes, use an emersion blender to completely puree the ingredients (if you do not have an emersion blender, you can strain out the solids and puree them in a food processor or blender then return them to the pot).

While the bisque is pureeing, add the half & half and bring back to a simmer. Allow the bisque to simmer for an additional 5-8 minutes to “cook out” the roux.  Strain the bisque through a large china cap to remove any “grainy” texture.

Add the chopped shrimp to the hot soup just before serving to ensure that they do not over cook before service.

If this makes your mouth water for more favorite dishes from Montero's, they are currently open Tuesday-Saturday with soup pick ups starting at 1 p.m., dinner starting at 4:30 p.m., and closing at 7 p.m.

6. The SweetEasy: Iced Caramel Latte

Recipe by Jonas and Casey Heard

There’s nothing like an iced latte to kickstart your morning on a hot, North Carolina day. The SweetEasy has taken the art of crafting espresso drinks very seriously, including the pursuit of the perfect iced latte recipe. This iced caramel latte is not too sweet and not too strong… but perfectly smooth for your daily boost of caffeine. 


Double-shot of espresso (we love Pale Horse Coffee’s espresso beans)
1 Tbsp vanilla syrup (check out for our favorite flavored syrups!)
1 Tbsp caramel sauce
8 oz. whole milk (or preferred milk type/milk substitute)


Brew two shots of espresso. Add vanilla syrup and caramel sauce to espresso and stir. Pour milk into glass. Pour the flavored espresso mixture into the milk. Fill with ice and stir to chill. 

This coffeeshop and bakery isn't open just yet, but they will be open in May for custom orders and curbside pickup with a grand opening to soon follow!


Feeling hungry yet? Give one of these recipes a try! We're all anxiously awaiting the chance to go back to our favorite restaurants, but in the meantime, brush up on your cooking skills and see if you can make a new family favorite.

If you're in town, check out all the great dining options Elizabeth City has to offer and maybe even find a new favorite!

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